Local News

Story published: 08-28-2013 • Print ArticleE-mail Story to a Friend

Let there be light?

Lighting options are tested for the cupola atop the Washington County Courthouse on Main Street.

By Karen Sells
Assistant Editor

An experiment under way at the Washington County Courthouse in downtown Jonesborough could result in permanent lighting for the 100-year-old clock tower.

“It’s a way to honor the building, but we wanted to be sure we could give the architecture the respect it deserves,” said County Commissioner Joe Grandy, the general manager of Ferguson Enterprises. Grandy has offered to cover the cost as a gift to the Town of Jonesborough and Washington County if the project is approved.

Input was requested from members of Jonesborough’s Historic Zoning Commission who initially were concerned harsh lighting would create shadows that distort the design features of the building. Unanimous approval of the concept was granted with the understanding that a variety of light sources would be explored.

Grandy said tests are being conducted with different levels of LED lighting, which would offer energy savings and minimal maintenance costs for the clock tower.

“All sides are lit differently right now to determine what fits best,” he said.

A surprise preview of the clock tower lighting was planned for the Courthouse Centennial celebration held Aug. 10, but had to be canceled because of rain.

When the plan is finalized, Grandy said the project will be presented to a county committee for consideration.